Orgacom – In dialogue with the South Axis



In the triangle of local authority, artist and project developer, the role of the artist (beforehand) is often unclear. That is what puts pressure on the autonomy and also the added value of  artists. During the processes connected with building projects, political and conflicting interests between the different parties play an important role in the decision-making process. The lack of clarity regarding the role of the artist means that the position of the artist in the test of strength is the first to come under fire. That is regrettable for the artist, but also for the local authority and the project developer, because they ask the artist to contribute already at an early stage precisely because of his or her added value and cultural input from a position outside the force field.

Orgacom considers that, if the role(s) of artists are formulated and verified more clearly, and may even be formulated in terms of supply, this promotes both the autonomy of the artists involved and their added value for the local authority and the project developers. It is easier for the local authority to justify the early involvement of an artist in the decision-making process, and the project developer has a clearer picture of what can and cannot be expected from an artist, as well of the conditions under which the artist works.

In order to arrive at supply/role allocation scenarios, Orgacom interviews ten project developers or builders who are active in the South Axis, ten artists who have experience with processes of this kind or who are working on the South Axis, and ten representatives of the local authority who are involved in art and project development on the South Axis. On the basis of the interviews, Orgacom writes some ten scenarios in which roles are described that artists can play in the above-mentioned processes. The scenarios are then put to the interviewees or even to a larger group of local authorities, artists and project developers, and are modified on the basis of the responses. The research results in a publication and a conference.

Main question
The main question of the research is: How can artists contribute to the decision-making processes in connection with the development of the South Axis?

Data and research method

1 By conducting interviews with policymakers, artists and project developers, scenarios can be formulated by Orgacom to which policymakers, artists and project developers react. The responses are subsequently used to modify the scenarios.

2 Orgacom investigates which articles (examples) can be found in the literature of artists who have been involved in building or project development activities at an early stage. This literature research serves as an input for devising the roles of artists in the previously mentioned development processes.

Orgacom wants to answer that question so that:
– Artists can obtain a clearer picture of the frameworks within which they can make meaningful contributions to project development processes;
– Project developers and the local authority can obtain a clearer picture of what artists have to offer them;
– Discussion can get under way about the nature of the commissions placed by developers and local authorities in similar situations.